A new approach by the NSW Police and the state government may be just what is needed to address the crime problem in our region.
Dubbo MP and Deputy Premier Troy Grant believes the current one-size-fits-all approach isn’t working and there is plenty of evidence to back him up.
Unfortunately, the Orana region and Far West NSW have some of the worst rates of crime in NSW.
Every time new statistics are released by the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, we see Dubbo, Wellington, Walgett and Lightning Ridge up high in the rankings.
It’s not unusual to see the words ‘two times the state average’ referring to Dubbo’s ranking for crimes.
Mr Grant said some towns in his electorate were classed wrong, which meant they got less resources than they need.
An extra officer or more equipment could make a lot of difference in the battle against criminals.
Mr Grant made his comments as he joined Western Region Commander and NSW Corporate Sponsor for Rural Crime Geoff McKechnie at the launch of Rural Crime Week in Dubbo.
Crime on farms and properties is an area that is causing police plenty of headaches.
Stock theft is rising because the market prices are so high, especially for goats, while thefts from rural properties is also proving a challenge.
The days of farmers being able to leave their houses and sheds unlocked has, unfortunately, long gone.
Thieves are now seeing them as easy targets because the isolated nature of rural properties means they don’t have to worry about keeping quiet or being discreet.
Unfortunately in some cases, farmers tools are being used against them.
In recent years there have been examples of farmer’s angle grinders and other tools being used to remove gun safes from their mountings.
The challenge now is for everyone to work together to ensure the number of incidents is reduced.
Police are encouraging the use of security equipment such as cameras, while also ensuring any criminal activity is reported as soon as possible.
While the focus this week is on rural crime, the review into policing structures and resourcing may be the best chance we have to see the statistics for all crime categories head in the right direction. Down.